Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Is it paranoia if they really are watching?

Blogger Matthew Yglesias has done yeoman work of late trying to dispel, once and for all, Richard Hofstadter's notion that paranoia is primarily a right wing phenomenon.

First, there was the post that I previously took note of highlighting the existence of a militia-right that hung out at gun shows. (Shocking!)

Here, he takes note of the fact that the Department of Homeland Security will start gathering information on "rightwing extremist activity." In describing this, Yglesias first applauds the fact, then backs off a bit and issues a challenge (emphasis added):

I’ll say two things about this. One is that this seems like an eminently reasonable thing to be doing. If you don’t believe that, you need to see Dave Weigel’s reporting from the machine gun show this militia stuff and Dave Neiwert’s stuff.

At the same time, I think it’d be great if some non-insane conservatives were to be a bit bothered by this. Legitimate concerns about security really can serve as a cover for abuses or misconduct. This was the problem with the surveillance organized by the Bush administration, and it’s a very real problem even with Barack Obama in the White House
Without further ado. One of my favorite non-insane conservatives from WI (or anywhere), Dad29 discusses the DHS alert:
Paralleling the current national climate, rightwing extremists during the 1990s exploited a variety of social issues and political themes to increase group visibility and recruit new members. Prominent among these themes were the militia movement’s opposition to gun control efforts, criticism of free trade agreements (particularly those with Mexico), and highlighting perceived government infringement on civil liberties as well as white supremacists’ longstanding exploitation of social issues such as abortion, inter-racial crimes, and same-sex marriage. During the 1990s, these issues contributed to the growth in the number of domestic rightwing terrorist and extremist groups and an increase in violent acts targeting government facilities, law enforcement officers, banks, and infrastructure sectors

"White supremacists' .....exploitation of .......abortion"??????

Are we to understand that Wisconsin Right-to-Life or Pro-Life Wisconsin has a "white supremacist" sub-agenda? Barbara Lyons as an Aryan Nation commando?



Given that Planned Parenthood was founded by a racist/eugenecist (whose admirers included A. Hitler), and that the vast majority of their locations are proximate to minority populations, what actual, real-live "white supremacist" would object to abortion?
Dad29 has a follow-up here.

Dad29 hat-tips The Other McCain, and I would have quoted him, but I am not sure if he would pass the Yglesias "non-insane" standard.

Update - For those of you that couldn't tell. I think The Other McCain would be glad to have Yglesias think him crazy. Just as I am sure RSM thinks Yglesias is off his rocker much (if not all) of the time. The difference is that Yglesias thinks the government ought to stand behind him with a nice new taxpayer provided rocker to catch him as he falls.


Your Lovely Wife said...

Save the Whales...Kill the Babies

It all makes sense to me.


There is no HOPE for this country, I don't care what Obama says. When are we moving to that compound?

johnny said...

When the report came out earlier this month warning law enforcement agencies of the dangers of left wing terrorists no one said as much as boo. This issue is yet again more partisan nonsense and the best part is that both reports were commissioned by the Bush admin but just werent finished in time. Like it or not, and its not often, but people do blow up abortion clinics and shoot doctors that perform legal medical procedures and police departments need to be vigilant to these threats. I saw the secy of homeland security on tv this morning and while she said that a footnote in the report should have been worded differently, she refused to apologize for doing her job which is to coordinate the security of the homeland which means that law enforcement should be alerted to ALL threats. No one on right said anything about the blatant unconstitutionality of the dept of defense infiltrating anti-war groups during the run up to the iraq war and that was so illegal that they dont even do it anymore.